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For many with Borderline Personality Disorder, suicide, especially in times of triggered dysregulated emotions or loss, can seem like the only solution to end pain that they just do not know how to cope with. Suicide, however, is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

Suicide is not the answer to borderline pain. The more that borderline pain isn't addressed the more dangerous it becomes.

Many with BPD have attempted suicide multiple times and even though they are still here, unfortunately, they have not yet been able to get the help they need or make the kind of choices in therapy that can support learning to cope with the emotional stress of borderline pain. In the meantime they remain at high risk to attempt suicide again.

Suicidal ideation can sometimes become a dysfunctional way that a borderline tries to protect him or herself from his or her pain. This really only multiplies the pain. This only adds to the reality that the pain will not only return but when it does it may return with an increasing intensity.

If suicide is not that answer, you might be wondering what the answer is. The answer to borderline pain begins with radical acceptance of that pain. It begins with a commitment to live. It begins with coming to an understanding and an awareness that killing oneself the absolute black, of black-and-white thinking – it is thinking (which may borderlines experience as feeling) that is polarized and that has nothing to counter-balance it.

This is why many with BPD, at various times, think – experience feeling or aware of feeling and believing that the pain they so fear – the pain of the original core wound of abandonment that is so central in Borderline Personality Disorder – is killing them or leaves them no other choice but to kill themselves.

Borderline pain is deep and profound and often all-encompassing. But it is important to remember that it does come and go and that you do have times that are better than others and that the triggered state of dysregulated emotions is one that leaves you experiencing thought distortions that make everything seem like it is always that way, always hurts that much, will hurt that much forever and those kinds of polarized highly negative thoughts and feelings that often lead many with BPD to act out or cry out in life, or just try to get out of life by attempting suicide.


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The answer to borderline pain is professional help. The answer to borderline pain is finding hope, even it is just a glimmer of hope to begin with. The answer to borderline pain is knowing that you have a process and journey in therapy to get through where pain will be a part of it. The answer to borderline pain is in understanding that if you can just endure it a little longer, let it hurt a little more, sit with and radically accept it, mindfully, without judging it you can get through those most painful, dysregulated emotions and that each and every time you do you are learning something about surviving your borderline pain.

All borderline pain has its roots in the core wound of abandonment and all borderline pain can be faced, felt, grieved, and healed in therapy through a process in which you can learn to tolerate the distress of the fear and inability to effectively cope with your pain long enough to gain the skills necessary to learn how to soothe your own pain.

Where there is life, there is hope. You must stay alive long enough for that moment of hope to be met with your engaging therapy in way that will support you learning to find other ways to cope so that you don't have to attempt suicide to try to make the pain go away.

What every borderline really needs to know about borderline pain is that it is pain from your past. It is pain that you have already survived. It is pain that you have dissociated from. It is pain that has come to represent a death to you – the death and loss of your authentic self to the core wound of abandonment  - a psychological death that you have also already experienced and that you have already survived.

Facing your pain cannot and will not hurt more than you hurt now. It cannot and will not more than you have already been hurt. In fact, facing your pain in therapy instead of repressing it, dissociating from it, denying it, or trying to avoid it, will begin to diminish it over it time. You will come to be able to learn how to manage your pain and be in control of coping with your pain instead of your pain controlling you and your life.

The answer to borderline pain is NOT suicide. There is hope. Search for hope today. Believe in hope. You will find hope if you truly search for it and open up to the possibility of hope. Hope is paradoxical to the dark recesses of the abyss of lack of self where all-or-nothing black-and-white borderline polarized cognitively distorted thinking threatens to keep you stuck in the active throes of borderline personality and a pain that is so young, that happened to you so long ago, that you so deserve to heal.

You can heal it. You need to believe that.

Suicide is not the answer to borderline pain.

Hope is.

Watch my video responseto a young man, named Mannie, with Borderline Personality Disorder who talks about his BPD and the fact that just days before his video he tried to kill himself.

© A.J. Mahari, August 31, 2008 – All rights reserved.

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Suicide is Not the Answer to The Pain of Borderline Personality Disorder